Douglas auto tech students restoring 1923 Ford T-Bucket

A historic hot rod is being built in the garage of Douglas High School.

"This is one of the best demonstration cars," said auto tech teacher Cade Baligad, who has been teaching at the school for six years and rebuilding hot rods with his classes for three years.

The 1923 Ford T-Bucket was obtained with donations from The Valley Cruisers Car Club, Napa of Gardnerville, Welcome's Auto Body, Butch Fredianni, Jerry's Rod and Custom and grants from the Douglas County Education Foundation.

Douglas senior Josh Carlson wrote the most recent grant to the education foundation.

"I learned some technical writing skills in my English class," said Carlson, who has been in auto tech for three years and is now Baligad's assistant. "I worked with Mr. Baligad, and we wrote the grant and got the money for the interior of the car."

The front and rear ends of the car are at Welcome's Auto Body in Johnson Lane where they're being painted. When the parts come back, students will begin reconstructing the car.

"I started out in auto tech because I thought it would be an easy A," said Carlson. "But then I built a machine that I could drive. As far as the T-Bucket goes, it's unbelievable."

Carlson wants to go on to college and either work as a mechanic on crew ship engines or come back to Douglas High to teach.

Sophomore Mikey Madore also wants to go into the automotive industry. He's worked in his father's auto shop since he was 12 years old.

"My dad owns Welcome's Auto Body, where we're doing the paint job for the T-Bucket," said Madore.

Madore said auto tech gives him the inspiration he needs to come to school.

"Mr. Baligad is my favorite teacher," he said. "He's the only reason I come to school. He keeps me going."


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